CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A homicide investigation is underway after police pulled a man, who had been shot, from a burning car Monday evening in northeast Charlotte, officials said.
Police found the man just before 6:30 p.m. in a car on Barrington Drive near Somersworth Drive.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said they responded to reports of shots being fired and found a man, who had been shot, inside a car that was on fire.
Authorities said they pulled Perry Demetius Bostic, 39, from the car and attempted CPR, but he died at the scene.
No arrests have been made.
Officers open up about trying to save victim from burning car
“I was on patrol in my car around the corner when the call came out, so we drove up to see if we could help,” CMPD Officer Brandon Gail said.
When Gail turned into the darkness on Barrington Drive Monday night, he found a car with smoke and sparks flying up from under the hood.
When he and another officer noticed someone slumped behind the wheel, they knew they had to do something.
"Looks like he's got gunshot wounds, he's unconscious, vehicle's possible started on fire," an officer said during the initial communication from the scene.
"I got him, back from the car," another officer said.
Gail said the car quickly caught fire.
“I walked around the car, realized the doors were locked, and after a few seconds, the car started to catch on fire, like rapidly,” Gail said. “So we tried to break the window with our batons, but it seemed like it took what felt like forever.”
“I heard all the radio traffic taking place,” CMPD Sgt. Amy Baswell said.
As Baswell headed toward the scene, she could feel the tension through the radio.
“I heard them talking about the car fire, about how it was quickly going from sparks to flames, and I also heard them communicate with each other about trying to keep each safe,” Baswell said.
By the time she got there, the flames were out.
When Gail discovered that the driver had been shot, he tried to revive him with CPR but it wasn't going to happen.
“I think that if I had to go again, I would do the same thing,” Gail said.
“I think they feel like they would have to do the same thing. It's just part of the oath we took to help people and that's exactly what they did,” Baswell said.
City leaders make plans to address violence in 2020
This is Charlotte's 103rd homicide of the year.
Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles said that starting in January 2020, the council will dive into the data and try to determine the neighborhoods most affected by gun violence this year.
'We must change the path we have taken this year. We must change that path," Lyles said. "You research has gone wrong, you find out what changes it and you target very specifically the actions."
"At the end of the day, this goes beyond the bounds of city government," councilman Ed Driggs said.
Other ideas to stop the gun violence included working with the DA's office to keep repeat offenders behind bars and addressing the violence as a public health crisis.
Over the summer, CMPD created a task force to help with the epidemic. City leaders agree it is a problem that can't be solved by just one agency.
Check back with wsoctv.com for updates on this ongoing investigation.